Energy prices are surging across Europe. At the same time, the UN climate summit in Glasgow is almost upon us. If the European Union wants to achieve its target of being carbon-neutral by 2050, it will need to transition away from fossil fuels in a way that is fair and just.
What are some of the policies that the EU should be adopting to make sure the energy transition is fair and doesn’t push more people into energy poverty? Should low-income families be given energy-saving technologies for free? What level of support is fair if we are asking households to significantly change their energy consumption and mobility habits?
To discuss some of these question, Debating Europe recently held an online Citizens’ Panel as part of the European Climate Pact, connecting citizens with a senior EU expert for a 30-minute discussion on how to make the energy transition fair.
Answering questions from our panel of citizens was:
💬 Aleksandra Tomczak – Member of Cabinet of European Commission Executive Vice President Frans Timmermans. Her portfolio includes, among other things, the implementation of the Just Transition Fund; the EU’s Internal Energy Market for electricity; Gas supply and international gas corridors; Energy poverty, and EU security of supply.
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The EU, on its own, will never be carbon neutral by 2050, unless we want to go back to caves and oxcarts.
The world is around 1.2 C above preindustrial (mid 1700’s) and we are well on track toward 1.8 to 2.0 by mid 2100.
No amount of money and technology will reverse 300 years of hydrocarbon-based industrialisation in 30 years, especially in today’s global economic and political model.
The UN is trying very hard to create a global and unified GHG reduction model that goes beyond present global politics and economics, and this may be a start in understanding that no one location of the world can fix / undo the changing effects of climate change caused by GHG emissions.
There may be some irony in all this as the so-called 3rd world countries with undeveloped economies and resources could actually be more developed from a nature and natural balance point of view when you remove the present global economic and political narrative that is presently used to define them.
Some parts of the world will have to stay natural while other parts of the world will house the factories that will prevent us from living in caves and driving oxcarts.
In the meantime, plan your life for the effects of climate change as there is no going back, certainly in your lifetime.
Taxes for poducts outside of the eu fabricated on non green ways
If “clean energy” is understood as synonymous to “non-fossil”, the obvious answer is nuclear. I know this will create controversy, but let’s hear the public’s comments first.
Yes with nuclear energy